Date:Saturday January 1 2011
Stadium of Light
Injury Ravaged Rovers were made to rue some awful defending, as Sunderland ran away comfortable 3-0 victors, after a wicked deflection off of Ryan Nelsen, further goals from Darren Bent and Gyan sealed the victory for the home team.
Changes were forced upon Steve Kean, with Grant Hanley dropping into right back, Mark Bunn starting in goals and Junior Hoillet earning a rare start.
Morten Gamst Pedersen
From the outset, it wasnt good signs for Rovers. Sunderland were faster, hungrier and technically superior as a lucklustre Rovers, apart from glimpses of play, appeared to be disinterested. Sunderland claimed a slice of luck on 10 minutes to earn their first goal of the game. Lively winger Elmohamady sent in a lovely cross, headed down by Darren Bent. Wellbeck was on the scene to strike, earning a massive deflection of Ryan Nelsen and looping into the far corner of the net. 1-0 Sunderland
It was the same right sided play which created the next goal for Sunderland. Elmohamady was given plenty of room, whipping in a powerful cross. This time Darren Bent found himself in pole position, glancing a powerful header into the far corner of the net. 2-0 after 18 minutes!
For Blackburn, the opportunities were few and far between. David Dunn was yet again off his game, whilst Brett Emerton was doing more lateral work then going forward. Junior Hoillet looked lively, trying to outdo his marker, whilst MB Diouf worked tirelessly on his own up front. As for EH Diouf, the crowd was getting under his skin after several frustrating decisions, and Gamst Pedersen couldnt string a pass together...
It just didnt appear to be going right for Rovers, who had their best chance of the half minutes out from the break. Morten Gamst Pedersen struck a bending free kick, EH Diouf getting in behind his markers, but struck his volley from 3 yards out high and wide....2-0 at the break.
Grant Hanley made way after picking up a knock, Benjani coming on in an attack minded substitution. Benjani actually became a thorn in the Sunderland defence, showing signs of the form that made him the main man at Manchester City. Benjani set up both David Dunn and Junior Hoillet, however both failed to take the opportunities. Josh Morris came on for Junior Hoillet with 20 to go in an attempt to freshen things up, whilst David Dunn was relieved of his duties, the colossal Harold Goulon making an appearance.
Blackburn however failed to create a clear cut opportunity through the entire match, whilst Sunderland were happy to sit back and block anything that came there way. Gyan came on late, and showed Rovers how its done. A Pace run down the left flank followed him taking an inside cut and bending it into the far post from 30 yards, bouncing into the net....3-0 Full Time
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Date:Saturday January 1 2011
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